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Ingesting AVCHD footage: Problems with Final Cut Pro’s Log and Transfer tool

April 13, 2010

UPDATE 22 September 2010: Apple has released an upgrade to FCP, 7.03. Having used it for a couple of days I can confirm that FCP no longer has an issue with long clips shot with LCPM audio (they transcode very quickly all the way through, what a relief!) and original timecode is carried through (at last). However, Log & Transfer is still unstable and you must be careful not to preview clips by moving the scrubber manually in the L&T preview window while transcoding as it has a tendency (on my machines at least) to crash. High-spec desktop machines seem to have fewer issues with L&T than laptops, no matter how high-spec the latter are.

Note: All comments below are drawn from my experiences using Final Cut Pro 7.01 and 7.02. Not all problems will necessarily apply to both versions all the time.

Final Cut Pro (FCP) cannot handle AVCHD footage, like that created by the NXCAM, on the timeline. You need to transcode the AVCHD files created in the camera to another codec, such as ProRes 422, in order to edit the footage (this transcoding is also called ‘ingesting’). This is accomplished via the Log and Transfer (L&T) tool, which can be found under the File menu in FCP.

You can use L&T to ingest footage direct from recording media (via a card reader, for example) or from AVCHD files stored on a harddrive. [*note: AVCHD files should be stored on harddrives along with all companion files created in the camera – in other words you should copy the whole contents of the recording media into a folder together, not just the .mts files alone. L&T will not be able to deal with .mts files that have been separated from their companion files. I create storage folders with names that begin with the date that the footage was shot on in the order YYYYMMDD_Subject , for example 20100223_JimmyBirthday . This way the folders can easily be arranged in date order.]

However, I’ve encountered a few problems with L&T. I’ll list these along with workarounds, if any.

1) L&T takes extraordinarily long to transcode long AVCHD clips shot with uncompressed LCPM audio – by long clips I mean more than a couple of minutes. Short clips of a few seconds will often transcode in less time than the duration of the clip; clips of 20 minutes can take an hour and a half to transcode. Workaround: Set the camera to record Dolby Digital audio – MENU > AUDIO SET > AUDIO FORMAT > DOLBY DIGITAL – and yes, yes I know, LCPM audio is one of the selling points of the HXR-NX5, don’t tell me…

2) L&T sometimes populates the clip menu (if that’s what you call it) automatically. This can be a real pain in the rear end because it can take ages if you’ve plugged a drive with masses of clips on it into the computer and, I’ve noticed, it also OFTEN does not find all the clips or folders on the drive, so you’re left having to add those to the menu manually anyway, using the ‘folder-plus’ icon in the top left of the L&T window. Workaround: It’s not 100% reliable, but if you make sure to remove all AVCHD clips from the L&T clip menu before closing L&T they tend not to reappear next time you open the tool.

3) L&T does not bring the source timecode of the clip through when transcoding. Each clip, after transcoding, has timecode starting at zero. This can be a serious issue if, for example, you plan to transcode into a low-resolution version of ProRes 422 like ProRes Proxy for an ‘offline’ edit and then reconform the project by re-ingesting the footage for a final ‘online’ edit at higher quality; FCP will not be able to find the points in the original files to ‘know’ which sections of those files to re-ingest because the timecode in the transcoded footage is not the same as that in the ‘parent’ AVCHD files. Workaround: Ingest and work in a high-quality ‘online’ format like ProRes 422 HQ from the start so you don’t have to re-ingest, or a format at least as good as that which you want to deliver the project in. Yes, this can take a lot of disk space!

4) The L&T playhead is screwy and moving it around can cause FCP to crash. L&T offers users a preview window for looking through clips prior to ingestion. In theory, you can look at a clip and only ingest the short sections you need by marking in and out points. However, I have found this to be very risky. Firstly, moving the preview playhead around too much can make it freak out and jump to the end of the timeline from where it will not budge. Sometimes it freaks out so much that it freezes or crashes Final Cut Pro. Sudden crashes can also occur if you try to ingest more than one section of a camera clip. Workaround: Transcode whole camera clips. Don’t scrub through clips by manually moving the scrubber arrow around – play through in real time using play button if you have to look at the clip before transcoding. Yes, it’s a pain, but you’re less likely to have FCP crash on you. [This bug has been carried over into FCP 7 from FCP 6, sadly.]

5) L&T often crashes if you queue up a lot of clips for transcoding. In my experience this happens if you queue up around 20 or more clips. No workaround that I know of other than to keep the number lower than that.

6) After FCP crashes and you restart it, L&T will sometimes not recognize the project you are working in. You will (yes, really) have to restart of the whole computer, not just FCP, so L&T can recognise the project. A real pain!

7) Sometimes L&T somehow thinks that there’s 0 space left on your scratch disk, even if there’s a lot. You’ll queue a clip, processing will not start and a bright octagon with a ! sign will appear in the status column. (If you try to delete the clip from the queue you will be told that the clip is in the process of being transcoded. This is not, as far as I can see, true.) Look down to the bottom of the L&T box for Total Free Space — if it says 0 and you know you have space on that scratch disk, you have this issue. Restarting FCP and restarting your computer will have no effect on this problem. I eventually discovered that if you change the scratch disk settings (Final Cut Pro > System Settings) to another disk and then back to the disk you want L&T will behave itself again.

In short, L&T needs a serious overhaul. You have to handle it very, very gently. It is a substandard tool within what presents itself as a world-class movie editing application. We all need to tell Apple to fix it via the help websites etc.

If any of you know of any other bugs in Log and Transfer, please add a comment to this blog post. If you have improvement suggestions, please mention those too, and I’ll send them on to contacts in Sony who will suggest them directly to Apple.

NOTE: It’s been suggested to me that Log & Transfer is more stable if you open L&T before attaching or turning on the device you’re digitising from.

Cheers!

Adam

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49 Comments leave one →
  1. April 21, 2010 9:02 pm

    Hi Adam,

    I’m glad you put up this blog for the NX5. I had one also a few weeks ago but I decide to sell it and go for the EX1R instead as I had (and still have) a bad experience with FCP 6. I shot a wedding with the NX5 and I have one clip of 45min lenght, and other 2 clips of 13 min in length. Whatever I tried, I cannot bring them in FCP via L&T or any other way. They won’t trans-code to ProRes or Apple Intermediate Codec. So I’m left out with the most important moments in a wedding and cannot edit them yet. I don’t know what else to do. I have tried Toast Titanum Pro, CS4 and even Vegas Pro 9 and still no joy. In CS4 I have video but not audio (as LPCM its not supported by CS4). , in Vegas, the clips are imported just partially and not in full length (from 45 min only imports 11min) very strange. I tried to make short clips (9min clips) using markers in FCP also…no joy either. I don’t know what else to try.

    A nightmare for me now….

    • May 5, 2010 5:05 pm

      You mentioned that you sold the camera and that you are still trying to injest the footage. I’m assuming you backed up the camera’s conetents onto a drive or some sort.

      One thing to make sure is that when doing so you keep the original file structure in tact (eg. BPAV folder) otherwise if you break them up you will not be able to injest them into the NLE later on. I’m no expert on the matter it’s just somethin i’ve come accross in forums.

      • adamwelz permalink*
        May 5, 2010 6:38 pm

        That’s correct. You need to copy over the whole contents of the card, not just the .mts files.

  2. adamwelz permalink*
    April 22, 2010 7:11 am

    Hi Danny

    solutions?

    1) Friends of mine have used MPEG Streamclip (which you’ll be able to download from the web) to convert .mts or .m2ts files to ProRes 422. Worth a try — I’ve never used it.

    2) If you allow the Log and Transfer playhead to play through your long clips without clicking ahead or back along the timeline it seems to keep L&T in a more stable state and less likely to crash. You can then use the ‘i’ and ‘o’ keys to mark the in and out points of a small section of the long clip and transcode that. My advice is to make these sections less than 5 mins long, preferably just a minute or two. While the section is transcoding it’s best not to do anything else in FCP, as this sometimes makes the whole durn thing crash, too.

    Please let me know if you manage to salvage your magic moments, or if I’ve misunderstood your problem somehow.

    Cheers!

    Adam

    • Danny permalink
      April 22, 2010 9:05 am

      Hi Adam,

      I tried the MPEG Streamclip also and an error shows up every time: Unsupported clip format.
      I had a go again last night with Toast Titanum Pro and it worked fine. The audio is out of sync a bit but that can be fixed easily in FCP.

      It’s a shame to have a 1000$ editing suite that would not handle the AVCHD code the way another 150$ software can! This I don’t understand! It’s just stupid, Apple wake up !!!

      Thanks for the solutions anyway…
      I’m out of the NX5 world for now. NX5 it’s a great camera I really enjoyed the short time I used it but the codec is recording with was a nightmare for me with FCP.

    • July 30, 2010 2:15 pm

      I had similar problems with Log and Transfer in FCP 6 importing AVCHD files from Panasonic cameras.
      It looks like FCP fails to import anything longer than 4 minutes.
      Importing long files in sections of 4 minutes each works perfectly, even though it is a real pain and waste of time, having then to stitch them back together.
      I have used other software, such as iOrgSoft AVCHD Converter, to transcode the files before importing them in FCP, but all had problems of one kind or another (out of synch audio, incomplete file transfer, artifacts in panning sequences etc).
      Apple hasn’t supplied any explanation, but it seem a FCP problem with the latest version of AVCHD (I didn’t have this problem with earlier cameras using an earlier version of AVCHD).
      If anyone has found a better solution…
      Roberto

  3. AKP permalink
    April 26, 2010 11:35 pm

    Hi Adam, fellow doc filmmaker here. Thanks for blogging so extensively about this camera. I’m thinking of getting one and am interested in reading more of your observations so I’m subscribing to your RSS feed.

  4. May 5, 2010 4:57 pm

    Adam i’m so glad you came up with this blog! This NX5u seems to be a tricky contender. I am kind of a beginner in the FCP editing world, however i wasnt aware that it would be this hard to L&T my footage. I recently filled up my 128GB external HD for my Sony NX5. I have a mix of clips ranging from 2min long to 2 hours long (Shooting a live Church Event).

    Now when i try to import a 5min clip using the “Log and Transfer” tool. It takes roughly 15-20min to complete. That seemed like a long time originally but i just assumed it was as a result of the AVCHD and having to convert it to ProRes 422. Later on that eavning i tried to import a 1hour long clip. I noticed that an hour had passed by and it wasn’t even 25% completed. I left it on over night and when i woke up nearly 7 hours later it still wasn’t completed (90%)

    My question is am i doing somethin wrong? Is this normal for a 1hour clip to take upwards of 8 hours to complete? In a forum post someone mentioned that they should import using ProRes Proxy first in order to do their editing. And then later on to import the original files. I was confused as to what they meant by this.

    I know that FCP7 comes with several different ProRes modes. I did some research and it says that ProRes Proxy maintains the HD video resolution, despite looking fairly compressed. They say it is great for offline editing or workin on limited workstation eg. Laptops (Which i am currently editing on: MacBook Pro 2.4ghz 4gb Ram) They also went on saying there is another mode called ProRes LT which is a general purpose editing codec with a higher bit rate than the proxy, but still friendly on system resources. They say that this LT is more suited for long-form productions. They say its Great for wedding or live event videographers working in AVCHD (which is exactly my case)

    Have you tried injesting with any of these modes? I am desperate for a solution because i have 2 more long clips that need to be injested by the end of the week. (One of them being 2hours long) Oh God!!! What did i get myself into!

    • adamwelz permalink*
      May 5, 2010 6:37 pm

      It will just take long. That’s all. In my experience, a 1 hour clip can easily take all night to transcode. Transcode times can be less for lower-quality version of ProRes, like ProRes Proxy, but I would not use Proxy for anything but rough offline edits or web movies.

      If you change your audio setting on the camera from LPCM to the compressed audio setting, clips recorded that way will transcode far quicker — Log & Transfer has a problem with LCPM.

      • May 5, 2010 7:18 pm

        Yea thats somethin i’ve read about alot in the forums. But wouldnt using the Dolby setting disable the shotgun mic? I was always under the impression that DolbyStereo was the onboard mic and not the shotgun mic. So does that mean by doing this i’ll suffer degrated sound in my clips? Do you think there is a really big difference when recording with Dolby compared to LPCM? What are your experiences shooting in Dolyb?

      • bypro permalink
        February 23, 2011 8:18 pm

        Mr. Brown, i was wanting to reply to your question re: audio type and the two on-board mics, but there was no “reply” icon at the bottom of that question so hopefully this goes near to where it should.

        I’ve been shooting in nothing but Dolby since i got the camera due to the long ingest time associated with LPCM…though now i hear that FCP 7.03 has fixed that problem, i just haven’t tried it yet. Both mics record great (of course, the shotgun is quite a bit better) in Dolby. I will probably now run a sound recording test of Dolby vs. LPCM to see how much audible difference there is as well as how much file size difference there is.

  5. May 7, 2010 2:10 pm

    Has anyone found out a solution to the Timecode issue? FCP doesnt seem to injest any of this when L&T’n the footage. Can prove to be a problem later on.

    • May 11, 2010 1:10 pm

      Hi All, I found out the solution to the Timecode issue with the NX5’s. I read a post made by an experienced editor named “Ron Evans” from DVinfo.

      He stated to “always use the Content manager tool
      to transfer files to the PC. It will bring in all the meta data such as timecode and GPS data etc.”

      According to him the only ways to bring Timecode along with the clips when transfering is to fallow this method. The only NLE that can transfer in the TC is Edius 5 according to Ron.

      • May 11, 2010 2:28 pm

        On that Note, Apparently Adobe’s new Premier Pro CS5 also works well with TC from the NXCAM according to a post on DVinfo

        “I’ve been toying with Premiere CS5 on a Mac Pro where I work and discovered that it handle’s the NX5U’s timecode just fine, as long as it’s reading the MTS files off the original card and not individual files copied to the computer. Playback and scrubbing through big files was very smooth. The Metalogging view is especially nice for logging and preview (up to full screen). Once imported I was able to export to ProRes with all metadata intact, including original timecode.

        I’m working in FCP so this is not a practical solution for the timecode problem, but it’s good to know at least one program on the Mac is reading the timecode.

        Also, AVCHD editing performs MUCH better than on CS4, though I haven’t done much to see if it suffers in any crucial areas. ”

        If anyone has the New CS5 and cam confirm this that would be great.

  6. Arlen permalink
    May 9, 2010 6:01 pm

    Someone may have stumbled across a workaround to the timecode issue in FCP here:

    http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/sony-nxcam-hxr-nx5u/478064-nx5u-buffer-error-w-camera-fmu128-solution-firmware-update-2.html#post1524677

    • adamwelz permalink*
      May 11, 2010 2:39 pm

      Hi Arlen

      it would seem not ;)

      I tried it, and it didn’t work. I am using FCP 7.

      Adam

  7. May 11, 2010 2:41 pm

    Here is a link to the post regarding the CS5 Timecode solution:

    http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/sony-nxcam-hxr-nx5u/478460-premiere-cs5-plays-nice-nx5u.html

  8. Bob Henderson permalink
    May 13, 2010 1:56 am

    Hi Adam….I’ve recently purchased an NX5u with 128gb FMU and plan to use it for doing some documentary work. I downloaded the Vegas Pro 9 that came with it and also the Content Management Utilty on a very recent Sony Vaio laptop that is dual core and 64 bit.
    I found that the CMU wouldn’t open properly [giving a browser error] and spent numerous hours on the phone with Sony support trying to get it to work…but no luck…seems it doesn’t
    like 64 bit whereas the Vegas is supposedly well suited to 64 bit. So, won’t be able to use the Vaio to capture info off the FMU and edit. Tried loading both programs on a very new dual core Acer desktop and got lucky…seems both CMU and Vegas working ok!
    I have a few questions that you or your readers might take for granted but, I would be greateful to hear their advice:

    1. I plan on shooting in full HD 30fps progressive in order to get the best image info possible
    then edit and export in a format appropriate for a particular use. Most blogs I’ve seen
    have suggested using the Dolby Audio mode to avoid editing problems, so I plan to use
    that mode in case I eventually use Final Cut Pro 7 instead of Vegas 9….it seems most good
    film editors are much more familiar with the Apple product and I may end up using them.
    If I use the supplied CMU to download the FMU into my Acer [PC] desktop, can I archive
    the download onto an external hard drive [Lacie Rugged for example] and will that
    archived file be something that Final Cut Pro 7 can ingest at a later date?

    2. I saw a question by a reader about using Dolby instead of the LPCM audio format…he was
    wondering if doing so caused the camera to use the internal mic instead of the [better]
    shotgun mic that comes with it. Any thoughts on this?

    • adamwelz permalink*
      May 13, 2010 5:33 am

      Hi Bob

      A few comments:

      1) I think the best way to archive raw footage is, at the end of each shooting day, to copy over the ENTIRE contents of each card into a folder named with the date first and then some reminder words of what was shot, plus the card number if you filled more than one card on that day e.g. 20100123_JimmyBirthday_card2. Be sure to write the date in YEARMODA order, not day first, so you can easily arrange the folders in the date order they were shot. Do this BEFORE using the CMU or anything else to transfer the footage anywhere. THEN BACK THESE FOLDERS UP TO AT LEAST ONE OTHER DRIVE, STORED ON ANOTHER PROPERTY, AND MAKE THIS A RELIGIOUS PRACTICE — you have no idea how often drives die, get burned up in house fires, or stolen. Even if you can’t get your backup taken to another property immediately, make another copy on the same property immediately. I tend to use the FMU128 as an on-camera backup, storing up a few days’ shooting on it before deleting when I need the space, and copying off to hard drive from the SD cards.

      The reason for transferring the entire card contents and not just the .mts image files is so that applications like Final Cut Pro can properly read the folders, find them and ingest them — which they can’t do easily without the ‘companion files’ associated with each image file. You can then read from your archive of folders of raw footage as often as you like, using whichever application you choose.

      2) As for shooting 30 fps in prog scan mode ‘for best image possible’, it may be best to rethink this. I too am working on a long doc project for multiple markets, both in PAL- and NTSC-land. Firstly, many people think interlaced images are ‘better’ because of the smoother pan look etc. Secondly, transcodes from 30 fps and 25 fps and vice-versa using top-line hardware such as Snell & Wilcox Alchemist machines are, according to those who I’ve spoken to, basically as good as each other — there is no inherent advantage to shooting 30 fps in terms of final broadcast image quality (and, with the NX5’s ‘group-of-pictures’ compression, when you shoot 30 fps each frame is more compressed compared to 25 fps). The advice I’ve taken, after talking to many people, is to shoot in the frame rate of my primary market, the territory where I’m most likely to sell the doc for the highest price. That will minimise post-production transfer expenses and all sorts of tech grief when providing for that market. Since I prefer the ‘filmic’ prog scan look and my primary markets are Europe & South Africa, I’m shooting 25 fps prog scan. If I sell into NTSC-land, I’ll pony up the US$ 1,000 per half-hour to get a quality Snell & Wilcox transfer made to 30-ish fps.

      3) Dolby is a compressed audio format, so if you’re looking for top-notch uncompressed audio you should use LPCM. However, at present Final Cut Pro has an issue transcoding clips shot with LPCM audio. Any clip longer than 2 or 3 minutes takes AGES to transcode to ProRes. This may be fixed in future, and I’m not sure if other editing applications have the same problem. Using Dolby or LPCM has nothing to do with which mics you use in my experience. Input mics are set using the switches on the left side of the camera, and you can choose to record via either the onboard or external mics while using either Dolby or LPCM audio.

      Hope this helps!

      Adam

      • David Goldenberg permalink
        July 16, 2010 9:16 pm

        Adam,
        You strongly suggest archiving the complete original AVCHD files before other forms of transfer. How do you do this on a Mac? When I hook up the USB connection (either from the camera or directly from the FMU-128, nothing appears on my finder. I have successfully used L&T to ingest directly from the FMU-128, but this is not archiving. Has anybody used boot camp to set up CMU on windows on a partitioned mac in order to copy the original files and been able to access those from FCP?
        I am using FCP 6.0.6 on a 2×2.8 quad core Mac Pro.
        help would be appreciated.
        David

      • adamwelz permalink*
        July 30, 2010 2:29 pm

        Hi David

        I have no idea why you’re not seeing the FMU in the finder — it should appear no problem.

        Just copy off the WHOLE contents of the FMU or card into a folder (not just the image files) on the hard drive, and name folder appropriately e.g. 20100614_JamieWedding — you’ll be able to access this folder via Log & Transfer and transcode to ProRes or whatever in FCP.

        Cheers

        Adam

  9. Bob Henderson permalink
    May 14, 2010 12:39 am

    Thanks for the comprehensive reply Adam….I will be taking your advice on both items.
    Keep up the good work getting the technical issues on the NxCam out in the open, we’ll
    all be less frustrated if informed thru blogs like yours about early shortcomings.

  10. Gary Turcott permalink
    May 16, 2010 10:04 pm

    I have been using L@T in FCP 6.06 to transfer AVCHD clips from a harddrive. Everything was going well but after 2500 clips or so, the L@T started transfering only every second clip. In the transfer window the conversion to prores was taking place for every clip but only logging every second clip to the browser. Any suggestions, fixes or anyone else having this difficulty?

    • adamwelz permalink*
      July 8, 2010 2:43 am

      I have no idea, having not experienced this issue. Have you contacted Sony about it? I’d be very interested to hear their response.

  11. June 5, 2010 2:58 pm

    Just purchased the NXCAM with the FMU. Looking at software, possibly FCP. Thanks for all the info here, great stuff!

  12. ira flushman permalink
    June 26, 2010 5:13 am

    I just bought an HXR-NX5 camera. I have been trying to load my Flash Memory clips onto FCP 6.06. No go. I got hold of Sony Tech in NJ. He walked me thru the process that works perfectly. Log and Transfer. Set up AVCHD with Apple media codex. Set audio format to Dolby Digital. And go…

  13. Nadia permalink
    July 8, 2010 2:23 am

    Hello all,

    Has anyone figured out a workaround for the timecode issues with FCP 7? I am having the same issues with the AVCHD footage from my Canon VIXIA HF10, ie. still not getting any timecode to show up, other than clip duration. I REALLY need to be able to get the timecode using L&T and I’m on a tight deadline with a doc. Any tips would be greatly appreciated!!! :)

    Nadia

    • adamwelz permalink*
      July 8, 2010 2:49 am

      Hi Nadia

      As far as I know no-one has figured this out. You might have to manually enter timecode after transcoding. It’s a huge problem! Rumours have it that Apple will have a new version of FCP at year-end — too late for you, and for anyone who wants to to an ‘offline’ edit in Proxy or LT and then reconform with a higher quality version of ProRes later on.

      If you transcode the AVCHD files to the highest-quality version of ProRes you require (422 or HQ, I would think) and name your transcoded clips very accurately (so you can match them to original AVCHD clips easily) the lack of original timecode will not be such a huge issue, as you will not have to re-transcode for an ‘online edit’ and you’ll be able to find your original AVCHD clips relatively easily.

    • Mr.Brown permalink
      July 8, 2010 4:27 pm

      @Nadia: As adam stated there is currently no real workaround for the timecode issue using FCP. I love FCP however the compatibility with AVCHD is dissapointing to say the least. I have just recently made the switch over to the new 64bit Adobe CS5 using Premiere and i must say i am LOVING every minute of it. I’m editing my content Natively without any need for transcoding HUGE long and Tedius Formats like ProRes LT HQ Proxy blah blah blah (In fact i can even edit directly from my FMU128) which is a HUGE benefit for me since i can start editing immediately after my shoot without even the need to backup (Although ofcourse i do). Also i’m no longer LIMITED to the lesser DOLBY audio format which was quite annoying IMO! LPCM Back again!

      Also ALL of my Timecode is imported INTACT! with no issues so far. I must say i was more than pleasently surprised with Premiere Pro and its safe to say i’m sticking with it from now on (Or at least until Apple gets off their A$$ and comes up with an Update or better yet FCP8 sometime in the near future.

      Never thought i’d say this! I’m a die hard ADOBE guy from now on! I suggest you guys fallow suite for the time being.

      Best of luck to all you FCP’ers!

  14. Dave Pino permalink
    July 9, 2010 8:02 pm

    Thank you Adam! This is very helpful. I have had fcp crash (quite often) when previewing a clip while another clip is transcoding.

  15. AndrewW permalink
    August 13, 2010 11:00 pm

    Do all of these issues still exist when shooting in Standard Def?

  16. August 18, 2010 7:53 am

    This BLOG has helped me a great deal and I want to give. I am like many a great fan of the NX5 camera and believe it’s miles ahead of many of the HDV offerings out there. I was also quite hesistant to move from Tape to Tapeless and have taken many of the best practice suggestions and advise on board (e.g. Archiving Whole folders to Hard drive and further making a backup of those contents etc). The reason I have decided to drop a comment is that I had battled for weeks to ingest a 2hours 58min footage I had of a lady’s 60th birthday until i read a comment in the ‘Life saving Blog’. The ingest kep crashing FCP after about 50-60 %. When FCP is relaunched, I basically have to start the process all over again. This happened all the time. I tired ingesting directly from the media whilst in the camera. I tried directly from the FMU which had the same media (synchronised recording), I tried from whole content that had been copied to hard drive. No Joy.
    After reading the post about making cuts (In and Out points)I decided to try it out and it worked like magic.
    Even if FCP crashed, you dont have to start from the beginning which is quite useful.
    I have taken the advise about disabling GPS and changing from PCM to Dolby Audio on board. I suppose it wont be a major issue becuase I am covenring events where quality of sound is not a major requirement.

    I am like most of you waiting for FCP 8 where we hope the NXCAM codec will become Native just like XDCAM…

    Thank You Adam for the vision to start this blog

    I hope my experience (though lengthy) helps someone out

    Kind Regards
    Lawrence

  17. Naveen permalink
    August 29, 2010 12:07 pm

    transferring data from sd card usin card reader,
    2 times it was done successfully, but next day i tried to transfer the new data log and transfer read no files in the card.
    If we explore the card in finder it shows the futage (.mts files).
    usin fcp 6.0.6
    sony nx 5

  18. Mark-in-Seattle permalink
    October 19, 2010 8:11 am

    My camera is a Canon HFS-100 generating AVCHD formated video. When ingesting video with L&T into FCP v7.03 as ProRes422-LT files onto my firewire external hard drive an odd thing occurs; during the same L&T session with several clips selected some of the transcoded MOV files are placed by L&T onto the external firewire drive and some onto the primary MacOSX drive. Using the FINDER I then have to manually copy those files on the MacOSX drive over to my intended target location the external firewire drive. Then use the “reconnect media” feature in the project browser window to tell FCP how to find the files I moved.

    In FCP system settings my external drive is the first scratch drive listed, the second scratch drive is the MacOSX drive. If ingesting (12) clips perhaps (4) transcoded files will wind up on one hard drive while the remaining (8) will be place on the other drive. Both drives have similar amounts of free space; in the range of 150 gigs or so.

    Being quite a FCP novice I am not certain that I’ve configured L&T all that well, though online searches and forums helped me specify the ProRes422-LT as the target intermediate codec(?). Is FCP trying to help speed up the transfer by employing parallel writes to both scratch drives ? And is there a way to let FCP know that I really want it to use just the external drive for L&T operations ? The reason two scratch drives are specified is that sometimes I wanted to do some quick operation in FCP without requiring the external drive to be on. Less wear and tear on the external drive (or opportunity for powerline spike data corruption). Originally thought this was a good idea but maybe “too clever by half”.

    Thank-you, a very useful blog which I will learn from in the future.

  19. Robin permalink
    December 16, 2010 9:16 pm

    I’m having a weird new problem ingesting AVCHD into Final Cut Pro 6 — it’s been working fine for over a year now, but suddenly, when I open L&T and navigate to the folder on my hard drive with the raw footage in (direct copy of all files and folder structure from the card), FCP fails to see any footage at all. No error message, no weird stuff happening, it just acts as if I had done nothing. I’ve tried navigating to the parent folder, to all child folders, restarting FCP, restarting the mac — nothing works…

    The only thing I did recently which may have a bearing was clearing out my caches from my User folder’s library. But L&T has worked since then a couple of times, so I can’t see this being the problem.

    Anyone else had the same problem?

  20. Tyler permalink
    March 22, 2011 4:49 pm

    Hey Adam,

    I just finished editing an 83 minute documentary. I viewed it for the first time on DVD and it looks like total crap. After discovering all the raw AVCHD footage was NOT imported as 1920×1080 prores24P(the way it was shot) but rather down res’d to 480xsomething then anamorphically stretched to fit the viewing window I fear there’s a chance I’ll need to edit the entire movie again.

    This is the first time I’ve used AVCHD and I’m looking for a step by step process to hopefully correct this issue without having to reedit my entire film :S

    Do you have any suggestions, is there a way I can replace each clip and keep the in and out points in tact??

    Thanks!
    Tyler

    • adamwelz permalink*
      September 21, 2011 9:04 pm

      Hi Tyler

      I just found your comment now. Were you able to figure your problem out? If so, how?

      Adam

  21. April 18, 2011 5:41 am

    Hi Adam,

    I just bought the NXCam 5U and did a 1 hours test to see how the boundry of the clips would seemlessly matchup before recording something for real

    I have FCP 7.03 and used L&T and it crashes everytime. I am not moving the play head or previewing the clips.

    In reality, 5 clips were made, yet since the recording was without pause L&T is seeing the clip as one long file as what I expected, and its only showing one clip in the window.

    I have a MacPro 3.0 quad 16GB Ram, everything else always works with this beast, expect for the NXCam.

    Windows with the Sony Media software coverted the clips fine, MAC keep crashing.

    Any insight?

    -G

    • adamwelz permalink*
      September 21, 2011 9:02 pm

      Gary

      i don’t understand your question. How did you make 5 clips without a pause?

      Cheers

      Adam

  22. Jockey permalink
    August 2, 2011 7:55 pm

    It makes me craczy. I cannot transfer avchd from my nx5. I have no problem with clips less than 5 minutes but even with a 9 minutes one i got the red explanation mark saying Error: No Data.

    How can we fix this problem? I use fcp 6

    • adamwelz permalink*
      August 8, 2011 9:58 pm

      You’ll need to upgrade to FCP 7.03 or FCP X to stop this from happening. FCP 6 is not able to handle the transcode of clips from the NX5.

  23. September 21, 2011 8:47 pm

    Hey Adam, I just got my Nx5 and am loving it. But here is my problem. Ive dragged All my files onto my hard drive and now I want to import them into final cut express. It won’t let me do that.. It says file error 0 files recognized 0 access etc…. But I can import them from the card without a problem. I know people say to get all the files and I transferred everything from avchd forward… Any suggestions? Sometimes I’m shooting and don’t have time to capture the cards and. Need to reuse some.

    Thanks
    Dan

    • adamwelz permalink*
      September 21, 2011 9:01 pm

      Dan

      1) I have no idea how well Final Cut Express works with the files from the NX5 — I use Final Cut Pro 7.

      2) That said, I’m not sure what you mean by ‘transferred everything from AVCHD forward’. You need to transfer the entire contents of the card – everything – to a folder on your disk. Are you doing this? Some people also recommend using the Disk Utility to make a Disk Image copy of the card, but I’ve never had to do this.

      Cheers

      Adam

      • October 17, 2011 11:04 pm

        Adam, thanks. I have actually been using disk utility to make a copy, because I wasnt having any luck with just copying the contents. Im Still at the deciding stage with software, Right now its between Premiere Pro CS5.5 and trying to find FCP 7. Could you do a quick rundown of your workflow? Are you editing directly in FCP or are you using other programs before you start editing? Thanks for the help. Im a total NewB

  24. September 21, 2011 10:52 pm

    i’m on a Mac Pro (OS 10.6.8) with FCP 7.0.3 – probably my LAST upgrade of this software : ( – and i almost NEVER use L&T because it seems to only see the FMU card, but almost never will it read the same files backed up to a BluRay disc. So, i use ClipWrap

    http://www.divergentmedia.com/clipwrap

    and have great luck with it. Highly highly recommended. It will automatically stitch long files together if you simply point the requestor to the BDMV folder (that’s all it needs). Pointing to the main/root folder (i.e., “NO NAME”) seems to not let it do the auto-stitching for some reason.

  25. Jamie permalink
    March 21, 2012 12:14 am

    Thanks Adam! Thank goodness someone finally addressed this problem! I’ve left posts on the Apple FCP forum trying to get help with the problem, and none of the so called “experts” out there had any useful suggestions. I’ve been banging my head against a brick wall with this issue. My firewire 800 cable (terribly designed cable in the first place can’t wait till this garbage is obsolete!) was accidentally pulled out while I was transferring footage from my HVX-200, (just looking at or breathing on this cable is apt to do that!) and all hell broke loose. I was able to successfully reconnect all the media, but even though my scratch disk had 90GB of space left the Log and Transfer window insisted it was zero! The only replies to my post were “you should’ve backed up your data!” True, but that would’ve had no bearing on fixing this problem! Next time I’ll crazy glue, and duct tape the piece of junk into my MacBook before I transfer!
    I’m grateful to have found this post. It’s the only one I could find that easily solved the problem. The Apple site and FCP help menu was useless. I love FCP but com’on, maybe try having a solution, or code for when you build an error message into a program!
    Thanks again!!

  26. Cassandra permalink
    January 18, 2013 10:10 am

    I have had several of these problems, but one that keeps occurring is where the video clip will speed itself up, and the audio stays at normal speed, but the duration is determined by the now double-speed video, cutting off the audio every time I try to log and transfer.

  27. July 30, 2013 5:48 pm

    Thank you for posting this! I just had L&T issue #7 happen to me… very frustrating. You saved my day and my sanity! Thank you!

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